Screamfest Review: You Wouldn’t Understand (short, 2020)

Directed by: Trish Harnetiaux. Starring: Anthony Arkin, Jacob A. Ware. Runtime: 9 min. Released: This film had its World Premiere at Screamfest L.A. on Oct. 15.

A brilliant and fun nine minutes with strong humour, Trish Harnetiaux’ You Wouldn’t Understand follows a man (Anthony Arkin) whose idyllic picnic is upended by the arrival of a stranger, Angelic Guy (Jacob A. Ware). The dialogue’s sharp and funny and I love some of the humour, especially horse radish being called “horsey sauce.”

The stranger tells Man some things that are hard to believe and it becomes a stand-off of going with the flow of the conversation or just challenging this weird stranger. There’s some tension to go with the comedy, and it’s very well-written by Harnetiaux and Ware. As well, the short is inventive and is helped along by two strong performances.

I will note that besides all the great aspects, my favourite part about this was the film’s score by Eleonore Oppenheim, as its three distinct riffs guide us through the story. It doesn’t hold our hand by any means, but really sets up expectations for what will happen next; as it starts with a care-free elegant score, moves into something more peculiar and tense, and then into something more fast-paced. It’s a really creative way to pace the film.

Score: 75/100

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